With the Civil War about to begin, Southern sympathizers attempt to sabotage the railroad construction efforts so Army Captain John Nelson (Sterling Hayden) is brought in to keep the project going.
Captain Nelson must not only contend with the efforts of the saboteurs but also try to romance the railroad foreman's daughter, Barbara Bruce (Eve Miller).
April 5, 2013 Subject:
A fine Western drama with loyalty to some historical facts.
The setting is Kansas just before the start of the Civil War. Construction slows to a crawl due to sabatage by southern sympathizers in a politically divided Kansas. The US military foresees the possibility of civil war and wants this railroad built to supply their western forts. In steps General Winfield Scott himself who orders the Kansas Pacific RR to insinuate a young Corp of Engineers Captain (Sterling Hyaden, soon to be black listed in communist-paranoid 1950's Hollywood)undercover as a civilian structural engineer to help move things along.
The railroad project construction manager (Barton MacLane) and his lovely daughter (Eve Miller) fear employment redundancy when the KPRR Corporate Office sends out a young structural engineer to help things along and control the carnage. After witnessing the engineer’s pugilistic finesse, practical engineering knowledge, diplomatic qualities, ability to quickly organize military-style defenses and sabotage the saboteurs, the father-daughter team begin to figure it out and warm up to the guy. Especially the daughter.
Some friendly and not so friendly espionage, lots of action, no silly comic relief, good character development, all with the obligatory underlying love story.
The 512Kb MPEG4 download is an excellent, vibrant Cinecolor print with an impeccably clear sound track. A Walter Wanger “A” list production through United Artists. Directed by Ray Nazarro. Great story by veteran writer Dan Ullman. A fine Western drama with loyalty to some historical facts. 5 stars.
The movie was filmed at the Iverson Movie Ranch and the Sierra Railroad in what is now Railtown 1897 State Historic Park, Jamestown, California. Walter Mirisch of Allied Artists had Walter Wanger's name put on the picture as a producer, although he was in prison for shooting agent Jennings Lang, whom he believed to be having an affair with his wife, Joan Bennett. Thanks to Mirisch, Wanger received a producer's billing, salary and profit participation.
August 28, 2011 Subject:
Romance, ey? Not really.
The dialogues between Barbara and John are exceedingly stiff and staged. Actually, the characters do not reveal much of themselves as the discussions are rather limited in this content. They do it because they have to do it ... and there is not much outside of this narrow perspective.
Well ... aside from this, the story has a good amount of holes and loops.
The setting is good and also the camera is not too bad. Nice to see a non-b/w western at the IA.
KP has its charm though and is a solid kind of western...
June 2, 2011 Subject:
Right good west'n, pahdnuh.
Sterling Hayden builds the last section of the KPRR to the Colorado border, while Quantrill tries to stop him. Somewhat formulaic, but it chugs right along.